Spring, Something to Look Forward To
My mother likes to celebrate Groundhog Day. It isn’t because she believes in the weather predicting capabilities of a rodent. She doesn’t. Rather, she enjoys what the event represents—spring is coming. It doesn’t matter if the weather on Groundhog Day is cloudy or sunny. Spring is still coming. As the days roll on in February, we get closer and closer to spring. It is something to look forward to. Winter can be harsh, but thinking ahead to spring can make the days more pleasant. This year especially, having something to look forward to can make a vast difference in our moods. Here is one method you can use in your homeschool for including this idea of having something to look forward to.
- Have each child name something, or several things, that he or she is looking forward to. Write them down. You can concentrate on things related to spring or not give any restrictions. If you restrict the list by season, you could repeat this activity in the future by making lists for subsequent seasons. Allow plenty of time for each child to really think about his or her ideas before responding. Part of the enjoyment of this activity takes place during the thinking time. It builds on the excitement. Often, the more you think about something, the more you look forward to it. If your child is struggling to think of ideas, name some items that you are looking forward to. You may want to begin the activity this way anyway. Maybe you are looking forward to seeing spring bulbs pop through the ground or hearing the call of a familiar bird that has returned from its winter home. Or you might look forward to reading a particular story with your family or studying a certain topic. Create the list with any boundaries you choose. The point is to come up with a list of items to look forward to, and everyone should name at least one item.
- Create a master list of the items and post them in a prominent place. You can do this however you want. It could be an art project or a simple piece of paper. The point is to have the list posted in such a way that everyone in your household can see it. February can be a challenging month. Depending on where you live, it can be freezing cold and dreary. The winter blues can set it. If you find the mood of your homeschool is low, refer to the list often and remind everyone of the items they are looking forward to.
- As time passes, you will witness items on your list taking place. When you do, be sure to acknowledge, appreciate, and celebrate each item. Remind your child about the time when you created the list together and how it felt to look forward to something. Discuss how it feels now. Depending on the age of your child, you can expand this discussion to talk about God’s faithfulness. As Christians, what do we look forward to?
Spring is just around the corner. Before you know it, winter will be just a memory, and we will be looking forward to summer. Looking ahead does not mean we are ignoring the present. Rather, looking ahead is confirmation that we appreciate our present and will appreciate the days to come. I look forward to the first blooms of spring just as I looked forward to the first snowfall. May you look forward to many pleasant days ahead.
Heidi Kinney is a freelance writer from Massachusetts. She has been homeschooling her children since 2007. She shares homeschool resources and lessons at SharedLessons.org, and inspiration for runners at WhySheRuns.com.